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Portland Residence by Atelier Barda


The Portland Residence is a historical stone house located in the 'Model City' of Mount-Royal, in the heart of Montréal Island. Built in the early 20th century, it recently underwent a complete renovation by Atelier Barda, involving the redesign of the entire three stories, and the addition of an extension out the back. The Montréal based, award-winning architectural firm also created a custom furniture collection for the project, through its new product design division Foraine par Atelier Barda.

The main considerations for the redesign were the house’s location in the heart of the garden city and a desire to respect the heritage value of the surrounding built environment. Set apart from the upper floors, the main living area on the ground floor has an open layout and anthracite oak finishes that contrast with the light tones of the rest of the space. An iconic de Sede sofa faces the beautiful, custom stone fireplace, while pieces of classic-lined furniture in solid anthracite oak are featured here, and throughout the home. All of the pieces, including the dining table, bench, coffee table, end tables and night tables, were designed by Foraine par Atelier Barda.

The partitioned layout of the original residence was entirely reconfigured to allow for fluid, intuitive circulation, with a central service block, around which family life revolves. Designed in the form of a black rectangular box connecting the different levels, it includes a closet and powder room, along with kitchen appliances and equipment, and provides access to the stairs and a bookcase. It also serves as a transition between the private bathroom and bedroom spaces, and the common areas including living room, entrance hall, kitchen and family room, thus freeing up the peripheral space for occupants’ use.

All materials for the project were selected to create a soft atmosphere. The chevron parquet in natural light oiled oak and clean-lined mouldings strike an elegant balance between the house’s original features and new architectural elements. The thicknesses of the materials are concealed to obtain sharp edges where surfaces meet, playing with perceptions of volume and juxtaposition. Not only a reference to the house’s original architectural features, the curved surfaces also promote fluid transition between spaces.

The curved stair railing is another stunning, custom interior architectural detail. On the next floor above the living areas are the bedrooms and a private office. In the bathrooms, a classic lime and tadelakt plaster finish with marble countertops and flooring create a peaceful environment. The skylight above the staircase allows abundant natural light to reach as far as the bedrooms.

Photography by Alex Lesage, Threefold

This innovative redesign has freed the building’s spirit from its original constraints, giving it fresh expression in a setting that is both classic and resolutely contemporary.

Images courtesy of Atelier Barda / v2com

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